Community Partnerships Strengthen Future OC Workforce

Friday, February 08, 2019

Main News Photo

Nearly 300 students from Orange County high schools and community colleges visited Irvine-based technology and life science companies for the second annual Irvine Career Discovery Day on Feb. 5, hosted by the Greater Irvine Chamber along with nonprofit partners Irvine Public Schools FoundationOrange County United Way, and Vital Link.

“Irvine Career Discovery Day is part of the Chamber’s workforce development initiative. The event provides an opportunity for students to see first-hand the exciting 21st-century career paths available to them here in Irvine,” said Bryan Starrpresident and CEOGreater Irvine Chamber. “Preparing our future workforce is key to fulfilling the Chamber’s mission to advance the economic vitality of greater Irvine.”

The career exploration event introduces students to the possibility of pursuing technical careers and closes the gap between education and the workforce. Students are provided the opportunity to connect with professionals within the industries of participating companies, and seek guidance on resume building and other ways to prepare for a technological career. 

Participating tech and life science partners, Edwards LifesciencesEON RealityGoogleKelley Blue Book – Cox AutomotiveParker AerospaceVincit California, and Zillow, provided students with an immersive experience including site tours, panel discussions, and Q&A sessions. At each site, students heard from professionals about details of their individual career paths and the steps taken to get to get where they are today. 

“Many of us remember how daunting choosing a career path seemed when we were students, so we're excited to play a part in encouraging local youth by hosting this year's Career Discovery Day at Google Irvine. We also want to say a big thank you to the Greater Irvine Chamber of Commerce and Orange County United Way, for their joint collaboration in making this day possible,” said Fred Faber, software engineer and site lead, Google.

This year's catering sponsor, Panini Kabob Grill, generously served participating students and volunteers.

Click here to view photos from the event.

About Irvine Public Schools Foundation

Founded in 1996 by concerned parents and community leaders, Irvine Public Schools Foundation (IPSF) sponsors enrichment programs and provides financial support to ensure educational excellence in Irvine schools. In addition, IPSF excels at uniting local corporate and community partners, parents and residents in raising funds to nurture student potential. Each year, IPSF provides millions of dollars in funding to Irvine Unified School District to support STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) education, small-group learning, afterschool and summer programs, grants for classroom innovation, and support for mental-health initiatives, athletic trainers and school nurses.

About Orange County United Way

Orange County United Way focuses on long-term solutions to the most critical interconnected challenges facing local children and families and delivers more than 50 Community Impact programs countywide. FACE 2024, the organization’s 10-year community-wide action plan, aims to cut the high school dropout rate in half, increase healthy youth by one-third, cut the percentage of homeless or unstably-housed children and families in half, and reduce financial instability by 25 percent. United Way is doing more to make long-term measurable difference in the lives of children and families in Orange County.

About Vital Link

Vital Link is a non-profit organization dedicated to preparing students for future careers through experiential learning opportunities. Vital Link offer programs that introduce students to the world of robotics, design engineering and manufacturing, medical careers, performance engineering, computer programming, and much more. Through these hands-on programs, the organization inspires students to feel confident and excited to pursue a fulfilling career. Vital Link's mission is to be the link between business and education to prepare students for the successful transition to a meaningful career.

To learn more about the Chamber’s workforce development and career exploration work, contact Jessica Yip.

For more information about the Greater Irvine Chamber, visit


Category: Chamber News, Workforce Development, Community News